Archive for Outdoor Furniture

Pollen

Although this picture has been edited to exaggerate the amount of pollen, I’ll admit it, this is my (Autumn’s) van. Mary would never let Roxy get this dirty!

Spring has officially sprung!  Here on Lake Gaston, it looks like Mother Nature’s highlighter exploded!  Pollen shows that everything is coming back to life, but how can you enjoy life on the lake when all your outdoor furniture is coated with a yellow haze of pollen?!  Here are some cleaning tips that will help cut through even the most caked-on outdoor filth on your cushions.  Then you can get back to the fun of the season!

Fresh pollen can simply be rinsed away with a garden hose, but for heavy layers or pollen mixed with dirt, dust or other messes, you’ll need to do a bit more work. For a deep down clean, follow these steps.

You Will Need:

  • Dishwashing detergent
  • Warm water
  • Clean spray bottle
  • Scrub brush
  • Garden hose with running water

Steps to Remove the Pollen:

  1. Fill the spray bottle ¾ full of warm water. You can use hot water if you’re not concerned it will cause color run on your cushions.
  2. Add a good squirt or two of dishwashing liquid.
  3. Shake well until suds begin to form inside of the bottle.
  4. Remove the cushions from the chairs if possible. This will allow you to clean both sides thoroughly. If the cushions are attached to the frame, work with the surfaces you can see.
  5. Rinse loose pollen or debris off with the garden hose. This will prevent you from scrubbing the grime through the cover and into the cushions themselves.
  6. After rinsing, spray the entire surface heavily with the detergent solution.
  7. Follow with a good scrubbing with the brush. Use care around any ripped, torn or weakened areas.
  8. Continue until all surfaces have been cleaned.
  9. Rinse thoroughly with running water.
  10. Repeat with a second spray down and scrubbing if necessary. Rinse thoroughly once all of the grime has been removed.
  11. If cushions were removed from the chair, try standing them on their sides to dry. If you can’t do that, replace them on the chair only if there’s room for them to drip through. If they can’t be removed from the furniture, and the furniture has a solid bottom, turn the entire chair on its side to allow them to dry thoroughly. Water pooling under the cushion will cause mold or mildew to form.
  12. If possible, set the chair in the sun to speed up the drying process.

Additional Tips and Advice

  • To keep the mess to a minimum, wipe the exposed surface with a sponge soaked in warm soapy water at least once a week. Hose off to rinse.
  • Finish with a fabric protectant, if desired.
  • Always try to dry the cushions as quickly as possible. It may even help to press some of the water out. If moisture remains, it quickly becomes a breeding ground for mold and mildew, which is very difficult to remove from cushioning.

(Instructions provided by www.howtocleanstuff.net/.  See the original article here)

 

Now you can sit back and enjoy the season!  Happy Spring!

~Autumn

Mary Sherwood Lake Living -Working with you to create your lifestyle!

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Summer is quickly approaching and we will be spending more time outdoors around beautiful Lake Gaston.  With some pre-planning and these quick tips, you can be ready to play and enjoy all your outdoor time:

  1. Take In A Breath of Fresh Air:  On warm spring days (before or after pollen season) open your windows, air out your house. Clean and repair screens to enjoy the greatest benefits from the warm breezes.

    Blue Porch Ceiling, Haint Blue, Daylight in Porch

    Blue Porch Ceiling

  2. Clean out the cobwebs:  Clean the ceiling fan blades of dust and cobwebs.   Check that the blades are rotating counter-clockwise for summer air circulation.  In years past, front porch ceilings were painted blue to keep the spiders away.  Last summer, we painted our screened porch ceiling sky blue and our spider population really decreased.  There is an interesting interview on NPR that talks about blue porch ceilings.

    http://n.pr/10PGG7v

    Folklore or not, it is worth a try.

  3. Outdoor Furniture, Comfortable Outdoor Furniture, Homecrest Furniture

    Comfortable Outdoor Furniture

    Comfy Furniture:  To enjoy your leisure time outdoors make sure your furniture is comfortable.  If you can’t invest in the best, start with inexpensive plastic furniture and cushions that you can easily replace when the budget allows.  I invested in our porch furniture over twenty years ago.  Every five to seven years, I have re-covered or replaced the cushions.  Most of our guests say our porch seating is the best seating in the house!

  4. Prep the Grill:    Summertime is barbecue time!  Clean your grill, check the gas ports, fill the propane tank and empty the grease traps.

    four_square_gardens_hero

    Grow Your Own

  5. Grow Your Own:  Whether you have limited space or a large plot, consider growing your own produce.  It can save money, help you eat healthy, limit the pesticides in food and help our planet.  If you are new to vegetable gardening, tomatoes, basil, herbs and lettuce are a few easy veggies to start with.

    Outdoor Lighting, Mason Jar Lighting, String Lights

    Outdoor Lighting

  6. Illuminate the Dark:  For safety’s sake, illuminate all outdoor paths and stairs.  There are many new LED lighting options to efficiently do the job.
  7. Lighten up your Closet:  Move the heavier, darker clothes and boots of winter to the back or far side of your closet.  Make room for the sundresses, flip-flops and bathing suits.
  8. Freshen Up Your Guest Rooms:  Fluff up your bedding and replace your pillows or give them a spin in the dryer on air dry with a fabric dryer sheet.  Add a value priced duvet cover or matelasse coverlet to give a fresh look to the room.
  9. Pump It Up:   Inflate all the water toys and check for leaks.  It’s no fun having the kids all ready for a ride and not have use of their favorite floating vehicle.
  10. Get Your Lounge On!  Put on your shorts or favorite swimsuit, head to the deck or pier and “get your lounge on”.  Enjoy!!!

 

What do you look forward to most about summer at the lake?  Tell us and maybe we can help you enjoy it even more!

 

Mary Sherwood Lake Living – working with you to create your lifestyle!

May
15

Swing into Summer…

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Love the fabrics and the ropes! Photo from This Old House

Just imagine. It’s a quiet, lazy afternoon at Lake Gaston. You are worn out from a busy work week and it’s time to relax. Grab your book and head to the porch or covered deck, climb into your porch swing bed and your week’s demands just fade away. Get the picture?

Remembering my grandmother’s front porch swing makes this new swing version so appealing to me. There are many different varieties and styles. I love the idea of mixing outdoor fabrics, colors and patterns to create your own outdoor look. Here are a few of my favorites.

Show your patriotic colors. Photo by PB

Double Swing Bed Duty Photo from Coastal Living

Modern Porch Swing

Porch bed swings are one of my favorite new trends. I am “dreaming” of where I may use one of these!
If you do not have the space or budget for the swing bed there are other options to help you relax in motion. The “front porch” swing styles have evolved with many choices of wood, wicker, metal or poly-wood. Add your cushions for comfort and color and you have created your own outdoor oasis.

Comfy swing chair for the garden by Magnolia Casuals

A smaller and comfortable swing option is the fabric swing chair.  It is available in a wide variety of colorful outdoor fabrics.

Once you have selected your way of “swinging into summer” here are a few tips to get a longer life out of your outdoor swing cushions or any outdoor fabric products:

  1. Use outdoor fabrics made of 100% acrylic or 100% spun polyester fiber. There are several types of outdoor fabrics with Sunbrella solution dyed acrylic being the industry leader. Please note that outdoor fabrics are water repellant not water proof.
  2. Never leave your outdoor cushions out when expecting excessive rain. Although outdoor fabrics are meant to stand up to all weather conditions, saturating the fabric with water will make the cushions harder to dry.
  3. Outdoor cushions can be made with fast-draining marine foam if they will remain outside for long periods to decrease drying time and help prolong their life.
  4. Most outdoor fabrics are mildew resistant; however, mildew will grow on dirt and oil. Keep your fabrics clean by using a solution of liquid dish detergent and warm water to clean away dirt and dust.
  5. For stubborn stains on Sunbrella fabrics, add bleach to the soap and water solution, or use a fabric spot remover. Sunbrella acrylic fabrics are not damaged by bleach.
  6. Stains on printed acrylic fabric can usually be removed with a mild soap-and-water solution. Do not use bleach on printed acrylic fabrics, as it will fade the printed pattern.
  7. Keep suntan oil off the fabric. Suntan oil can stain outdoor fabrics. If stained with suntan oil, remove by using a commercial spot remover for grease stains. Follow the instructions on the bottle.
  8. Try to put your patio cushion away when not in use. Storing your outdoor cushions will increase the time your fabric stays new and vibrant. Take your cushions in for winter, then let them back out again for summer.

Here are some helpful links for more different swing bed style and a DIY video about constructing your own outdoor bed!

http://www.livinglocurto.com/2009/07/hanging-porch-beds/

http://www.houzz.com/Porch-Swing-Bed

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIbrgLQY48g

 

Happy swinging and outdoor “Lake Living”!

 

Jun
08

AND THE LAKE GASTON WINNERS ARE…

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We are pleased to announce the winners of our giveaways during our recent After Hours WINOS event, Memorial Day weekend.  Three of the four winners were men.  That is quit a switch from our pool of women dominated shoppers.  So does this tell us something…do we have to serve them wine or beer to get them in the door?  You decide.

We appreciate the MEN and women who took time out of the busy and beautiful holiday weekend to spend some time with us.  We are truly the “winner” because of your continued support of our business.  It is nice to be right there with the following individuals in the “Winner’s Circle”.

Peter Varney from Charlotte, NC  Winner of a Wine Basket Carrier from Acacia Home and Garden

Kevin Byerly from Charlotte, NC  Winner of a Wine Basket Carrier from Acacia Home and Garden

Joann Robertson from Greenville, NC  Winner of W.I.N.O.S. Cook with Wine cookbook

Rob O’Neill from Rocky Mount, NC  Winner of a bottle of Rosemont Winery Kilravock Red Wine

Thanks once again to WINOS Creator Bonnie Jesseph, Acacia Home and Garden WINOS Furniture Marketing Director Diane Christensen,  Rosemont Winery Vintner, Justin Rose for attending the event and all the cast of back- scene individuals who made this a fabulous day!

If you missed this event make sure we have your email address so you can join us next time.

Here are a few pictures of the party:

W.I.N.O.S., aprons, napkins, cookbooks,

W.I.N.O.S. Display in Mary Sherwood Lake Living Showroom, Lake Gaston

Cast, WINOS event, tent display, party preparation, Lindsay Stewart, Autumn Wenger, Peggy Howard

The "Cast" preparing the "set" for the WINOS Event, Lindsay, Autumn and Peggy

WINOS Furniture, colorful outdoor seating, mobile outdoor rolling cart, reclining outdoor chair

Mary Sherwood Lake Living Outdoor WINOS Display

Spring flowers, Hydrangeas, lilies, yarrow

A Spring Bouquet

food, recipes, Capt Rodney's Boucan Glaze, WINOS, cookbook

Our fabulous food, some recipes found in the WINOS cookbooks

buffet, kitchen island, food, recipes, shoppers, multi-generational

Several generations enjoy the food together at Mary Sherwood Lake Living

Bonnie Jesseph, cookbook, book signing, customer,

Bonnie Jesseph, WINOS creator, signing a cookbook for Marcia Nicolai

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Color, color everywhere!  That’s what we saw at the High Point Spring Market.  Here are a few colorful products and display pieces.

Rowe Furniture "Eye Candy" Chair

Painted Glass Vessel from Couleur by Mathews & Co.

Talking Head, Color Pottery, Garden Pot

Colorful "Talking Heads" from Kalalou

Colorful art, Quadtych, mod art, large art

Bright Floral Quadtych from Paragon

Porcelain, shell motif, turquiose

Procelain shell motif accessory from Global Views

Contemporary, outdoor wicker, outdoor furniture with color

Contemporary Woven Outdoor Chair

As you know our style is all about color.  Let’s work together to find the perfect color for your lifestyle!

What is your favorite color and style?  Let’s start a conversation by replying below.

Sign up to receive our future blog posts!

Mary Sherwood Lake Living

Working with you to create your lifestyle!

Visit us at beautiful Lake Gaston!

Mar
17

Sponge Bob is Wild about W.I.N.O.S.

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Sponge Bob, Acacia Furniture, Lake Gaston
Sponge Bob is Wild about W.I.N.O.S.

Sponge Bob enjoys relaxing on the new outdoor collection of W.I.N.O.S. furniture.  He can’t wait to tell all his Nickelodeon friends about this fabulous new furniture he found at Mary Sherwood Lake Living.

This furniture line was designed by North Carolina’s own Bonnie Jesseph and manufactured by Acacia Home and Garden.   The mission of W.I.N.O.S.™ (Women In Need of Sanity) is to inspire women to get together for laughter, friendship, a little wine, great food, storytelling and whatever it takes to bring some “SANITY” to their lives.

Bonnie’s company began as a way for her to find sanity in her own life.  Collaborating with a talented graphic artist she began creating a collection of cookbooks, apparel and accessories to support her company’s mission.  With the use of bright colors and fun sayings she launched a very successful brand.  Her enthusiasm for life, zest for entertaining and incredible creativity has lead to the new W.I.N.O.S. furniture collection.

W.I.N.O.S. Outdoor Furniture, Global Views Accessories, Spring Flowers

W.I.N.O.S. Mobile Bar, Dining Chair and End Table

Take the opportunity to meet Bonnie during Memorial Day weekend in our showroom at Lake Gaston.  The date and details of the event will be announced in the next few weeks.

Just like Sponge Bob, we are wild about W.I.N.O.S. furniture.  The vibrant colors, classic lines and fabulous fabrics are something to rave about.  Come see a selection of both indoor and outdoor pieces at Mary Sherwood Lake Living.

Let us know if you too are wild about W.I.N.O.S.!

 

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